BEIJING — The barometer of innovation capability in China rose at a faster pace in 2017, indicating the bigger role of innovation in the country’s economic development, official data showed on Dec 12.
The China Innovation Index increased 6.8 percent to 196.3 points last year, an accelerated growth rate compared with 5.7 percent in 2016, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
The index comprises four sub-indices, which measure innovation environment, input, output and effects.
The sub-index for the innovation environment jumped 10.4 percent, while for innovation input, output and effects, it rose 6.2 percent, 5.9 percent, and 4.8 percent, respectively.
“China had a better environment for innovation in 2017, with increased investment and output as well as improved effects,” the NBS said in a statement.
Of the 21 innovation indicators in breakdown, 19 increased in 2017, with double-digit growth in five indicators, including spending on fundamental research and technology market transactions, according to Guan Xiaojing, an NBS senior statistician.
Spending per researcher on fundamental research rose 12.3 percent to 336,000 yuan (about $48,800) in 2017, the fastest growth in six years.
Technology market transactions per 10,000 people engaging in science and technology activities reached 1.26 billion yuan last year, up 10.2 percent from 2016.
“The continued improvement in the innovation capability has provided strong momentum for high-quality development,” Guan said while noting challenges in such areas as prospective studies, disruptive technology innovation, and technology commercialization.
China has been pursuing innovation-driven development rather than economic growth based on exports and low-end investment, with increased fiscal support and an improved business environment.